As much as we would love to, we do not actually have the authority to forgive.  We can only ask to be forgiven.  I say this because inherent in forgiving others is the assumption that we have been wronged and they have wronged us.  In order for that to be true, we have to judge other people’s behavior.  The Bible says judge not lest ye be judged; therefore, we cannot judge and we cannot forgive.  However, look first to your own perception when you judge that you have been wronged.  Oftentimes, we have done something wrong within the context as well.  Thus, we should ask for forgiveness before assuming that we have the moral right to forgive others.  In other words, a necessary condition for us to forgive someone else is a judgment that they have done something wrong.  Rather, I would suggest blessing someone who you perceive to have done some wrong to you because ultimately you played a substantial part in them wronging you so you have no right to judge, and no right to forgive.  The judgment is always a subjective thing and often it comes from selfish motives on the part of the one doing the judging and thinking that they have been wronged.  Thus, it becomes personal and we need to ask forgiveness for being selfish long before we assume that someone who has wronged us needs forgiven.  To say that we can forgive is to say that it is okay for us to judge.  It is not okay.  In fact, we are almost constantly wronging others ourselves; in that wronging we lose the authority to judge and forgive.  This may seem counterintuitive but all I am saying is look to yourself and your own salvation before assuming someone else is wrong because that is a value judgment and not fair to anyone.

 

Jesus is the only human with the definite ability to forgive.  That is because he never wronged anyone and so was blameless.  That gives him a position of authority in which he can forgive others where we cannot.  Perhaps we need to seek forgiveness from Jesus and then put the other person’s forgiveness in His righteous and capable hands.  After all, that is what His death on the cross did.  It legitimized Him as Lord and he punctuated that legitimization by way of His Resurrection.  Thus, His death awarded us ultimate and all encompassing forgiveness.  He imparted this forgiveness and ultimate salvation to us even as we slaughtered Him like the perfect Lamb that He was.  So, technically, we no longer even need forgiveness.  It has been accomplished for us; so, live free and clear.  However, we still need to work for others’ salvation and bring them into the pasture of love with us, bring them into the Kingdom of Perfection with us, even as Jesus brought us in.  We can work our own salvation and forgiveness in that way and by praying and being covered in the blood of Jesus by way of unwavering faith.  When become free and clear, we can then impart that freedom to others, as Jesus brought it to us by His death on the cross.

 

-Jimbo

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